School run safety tips from GEM Motoring Assist
by Becky Harrison |
posted 03 September 2019
The breakdown and road safety organisation, GEM Motoring Assist, is encouraging parents and children to prioritise safety on journeys to and from school.
With the new school year starting this week, GEM says that it’s important for everyone – from toddler to senior citizen – to be aware of the risks that our roads pose. On UK roads last year, 48 children died and more than 2,000 were seriously injured with research showing that on 20mph roads, which are often close to schools, 81% of car drivers exceed the speed limit, and 44% go above 25mph.
GEM road safety officer Neil Worth comments: “Every child needs to learn how to use the roads safely, whether walking or cycling, and later when driving. But road collisions remain a leading cause of accidental death for children, and we know they can cause life-changing injuries.
"That’s why it is so important for us all to take responsibility - not just for our own safety, but for the safety of any children who share the roads with us – and find ways to reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries.”
“As another school year begins,” concludes Worth, “we encourage all parents, guardians, teachers, carers and older siblings to play their part in helping children to use the roads with respect, to recognise the risks they face and to understand effective ways of minimising those risks.”
Reduce the risk by following GEM’s top tips as children go back-to-school:
For some parents driving to school is essential. But for others, there may be healthier alternatives to the school run. How about teaming up with your neighbours and walking as a group?
If you do drive your children to school, park up legally, avoiding the yellow zig-zag lines and beware of crossings. Respect local residents by not blocking driveways and access points.
You will face a £100 find and 3 points on your licence if you are caught speeding so make sure you give yourself plenty of time and respect speed limits. Take note of the 20mph restrictions that may be in place around schools (either permanent or timed.)
Be patient at crossings and always be prepared to stop, as it is an offence not to stop at a patrol’s signal.
Kit your kids out with high visibility fluorescent or reflective jackets, vests or belts.
Remember that older children still need guidance. They may no longer need escorting into school, but older children can still overlook safety especially when they’re thinking of the day ahead and what’s for lunch. Make sure they get out of the car in a safe location, and never let them step out into the road instead of the pavement.